While the month of December brings some of my favorite things, it can also bring on a lot of stress and anxiety.
Even though this time of year is filled with holiday cheer, festive happenings, and the magic of the season, it can be difficult not to get caught up in the hustle and bustle. Here are four things to remember to help you stress less during the holiday season.
- Thoughtfulness does not mean perfection. Gifts do not have to have the perfect bow, the Christmas cookies don’t have to be magazine worthy – it is the thought that counts the most. No one will notice if you didn’t detail clean your entire household before having that holiday party (However they may remember if you forget the wine). The thought and how you made someone feel will always be remembered, not the perfection of a moment. Be thoughtful, but don’t stress yourself to be perfect.
- Plan and Conquer. Make a list (and check it twice) to help you accomplish your holiday tasks. Do not leave everything until the last minute. Figure out what cookies can be frozen, what shopping can be done in advance and take advantage of things such as online shopping, and curb side pick-up for groceries to help you save time. Take as few trips to the stores as possible, and try to plan for days/times that won’t be quite as busy, so that you are not overwhelmed by the crowds.
- Breath. I know this seems like common sense, but many of us just go nonstop between Thanksgiving and New Years and this can be draining both mentally and emotionally. Take some time to do something that is calming. Watch your favorite movie, take a yoga class, meet up with a friend for coffee, get a manicure or pedicure, really whatever makes you happy. Do something for you.
- Take time for happiness. This goes along with number three, but honestly remember what this time of year is really all about. It isn’t about the stuff, it is about the time. Spending time with those that you love the most will always leave you with more happiness than any gift ever could. Take the time to see the magic of the season. Drive slowly, look at the decorations and lights that line many of the streets this time of year. Schedule something fun- like a carriage ride or walk through a decorated part of town and smile.
I hope this this December you are able to conquer your to do lists, eat an extra cookie or two (without regret) and remember all that this magical time of year brings
What things do you do this time of year to help you stress less? What are some of your favorite festive activities?